- Sociologists were shocked by the impact the Beatles had on their fans
- The Beatles felt ‘a tremor’ from their audience
- Ringo Starr says band can’t hear themselves playing in live show
As fans watched The Beatles, whether they were playing a show or just walking down the street, they broke out in uncontrollable, intense screams. It couldn’t help but make an impact on John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. Here’s how the band felt about the response they got from their fans.
The secret to the effect The Beatles had on their fans
People’s reaction to the Beatles was something new. There were beloved stars before the band arrived, but the mass frenzy that followed Lennon, McCartney, Harrison, and Starr was unprecedented.
“I think a million words have been written on the impact we have on fans,” Harrison wrote in his column. daily Express in 1964 (assisted by Daily Express writer Derek Taylor), as recorded in the book George Harrison on George Harrison. “Psychologists get in on the act wherever we go. And sociologists. And psychologists. The fact, as we always say, is that we don’t know why we make audiences react the way they do. They do. They just do.”
George Harrison Once Said The Beatles Were ‘All Crummy Musicians, Really’
But no one ever asked The Beatles how their fans (and their screams) made Them Realization.
“What has never been discussed is what the audience does to us,” he wrote. “This emotional response isn’t just one-sided — it’s a communication.”
How The Beatles Fans Made Them Feel
As long as you’re on stage, it’s a unique experience to perform in front of people shouting at you with gusto.
“It really is an electric thing,” Harrison wrote. “The feeling that comes from the fans hits you straight in the stomach and then practically takes over.”
After a performance, Starr told Harrison that he could “feel the audience’s excitement right through him.”
According to Harrison, sensation is a “material thing”, but it is “very hard to explain.”
“It’s not pain,” he wrote. “But a feeling, a tingling, a vibration that hits you, spreads throughout your body until you glow. It’s euphoria and it generates a vitality of its own and can honestly take you over yourself.” It takes you. You think you can move on forever. Time has stood still. There’s only the moment and you’re living it. We feel the same way and maybe the fans feel the same way.”
After every show, the band would feel exhausted, “but you feel great.”
Ringo Starr said the band couldn’t hear each other among fans
when the star was on The Ellen DeGeneres Show In 2015, he described what it was like to play to an audience, who never stopped yelling.
“We couldn’t hear us,” he said. “So, you know, it looked like you came to see the Beatles and then Paul counted and then you screamed until we bowed down and left. But it was great. The atmosphere was great.”
George Harrison on Every Beatles Was Really Like: Ringo Starr Was ‘The Party Boy’
While the band found the atmosphere electrifying, they felt they were “becoming really mediocre musicians.” All Star managed to “just keep time” during those many shows. He had to watch “John’s A**” to stay on the beat.
“We made a conscious decision — we were becoming loose musicians — and so we decided, ‘We need to go to a studio and see what we really got. And that’s what started. And we found some great things. “